What is the reason for child marriage? It seems post puberty marriage requires atonement by donating one cow for each monthly cycle a woman passes through till marriage . This looks like an after thought/personal belief of some old man who knew Sanskrit and had the ability to introduce it in a convincing portion of some ancient manuscript. If this were to be implemented today, then we would have to look at donating an Aarey Milk Colony (Government of Maharashtra’s diary) or Mahanand ( a cooperative diary) on a regular basis.

This seems too much. No one needs this many cows. So we would use the modern alternative to Go Daan (donation of cow). Get a UP chap living in the vicinity to bring his cow, hold the tail of the cow and stroke it three times and then give a coconut along with betel leaf and supari to the UP chap along with some money. Since a diary has to be given, get three cows and multiply the money in an equivalent manner.

K hails from Tamil Nadu and has maintained his roots in spite of working all over India . He can add mirch masala to any event and describe it in a witty and arresting manner. He was describing how in olden times the “fitness” of the bride and groom for any marriage is ascertained. Most inhabitants of villages use the nearby river or tank for taking bath. The groom undergoes a close, but discreet visual inspection (especially during Aviniavittam- annual festival relating to our Poonal- sacred thread) to ensure that he meets with the essential “requirements” of a martial contract.

The bride inspection is a more tricky affair. They have no Avini Avittam (women do not wear sacred thread) and any way river/tank inspection by outsiders may not be feasible or practical. So at the time of marriage, the groom’s sister has been given the responsibility to assist in wearing the formal sari. This is an occasion for inspection and ‘quality check”. The sister comes out and gives a discreet approval to whom – that I do not know. I cannot imagine that any groom will hover in tension at that juncture for any high sign from sister. Perhaps, the groom in those times has to follow the orders. The high sign could be to parents or some busy body who had undergone such an experience.

This seems to be an earthy and robust way of ascertaining fitness of persons who have little or no idea about each other. If it is extended to today, it would be extension of pulling the hair experience which I had described in another blog.

Religion along with education is big business today. Some of them are quite good at what they aim and achieve. One of them is Swami Udit Chaitanya. He propounds an interesting concept. It runs somewhat like this. God is within each human being. The soul residing within each body is what distinguishes a live person and a corpse. It should be our endeavour to enhance the soul’s quality in all ways (Ambassador car to at least Benz if not Porsche or Bently). The words he uses is elevate the mind to a higher plane where the earthly concerns do not sway the mind ( children’s education, annual bonus, birthday present for spouse, boss’s goodwill or lack of it) . We should slowly insulate our mind from these concerns and focus on the divinity residing within us.

The more interesting concept he propounds is that God is not going assist in solving the problem you lay before Him. If you are made to stand in one place (in lieu of God) for three hours and listen to all the problems of the earthly beings passing in front of you, at some stage you would give up if you have to retain sanity. (Doctors are taught not to get emotionally involved with the sufferings of their patients). Similarly God would not ensure that your child would pass IIT entrance and get admission. The child has to strive for it. Your prayers would assist you in becoming a better human being so as to assist the child in reaching this goal.

I find this a frightening concept as it seems to indicate that I am responsible for solving my problems and God (like the Chairman of the Company I serve) can only smile at you from a distance and wave hand (if He feels like it). Why do thousands of devotees stand in line at Siddhi Vinayak Temple (a very popular temple in Mumbai and a must for each tourist) each Tuesday, if similar results can be achieved during a less crowded day? I remember my brother dragging me to this temple on Tuesdays when we were kids and the temple was much smaller and far less crowded. He used to make me remove the foot wear and keep it at a distance from the temple and stand on hot floor in the afternoon. I used to chide him that we won’t get more punya for getting our soles burnt. Perhaps I was tuned to right philosophy from my child hood.
I end this blog with a joke I read and enjoyed.
Funniest Divorce Letter ever
Dear Wife:

I’m writing you this letter to tell you that I’m leaving you forever. I’ve been a good man to you for seven years and I have nothing to show for it. These last two weeks have been hell. Your boss called to tell me that you quit your job today and that was the last straw. Last week, you came home and didn’t even notice that I had a new haircut,had cooked your favorite meal and even wore a brand new pair of silk boxers. You ate in two minutes, and went straight to sleep after watching all of your soaps. You don’t tell me you love me anymore; you don’t want anything that connects us as husband and wife.

Either you’re cheating on me or you don’t love me anymore; whatever the case, I’m gone.

Your EX-Husband

P.S. Don’t try to find me. Your SISTER and I are moving away to Assam together! Have a great life!

Dear Ex-Husband,

Nothing has made my day more than receiving your letter.

It’s true that you and I have been married for seven years, although a good man is a far cry from what you’ve been. I watch my soaps so much because they drown out your constant whining and griping. Too bad that doesn’t work.

I DID notice when you got a hair cut last week, but the first thing that came to mind was ‘You look just like a girl!’ Since my mother raised me not to say anything if you can’t say something nice, I didn’t comment. And when you cooked my favorite meal, you must have gotten me confused with MY SISTER, because I stopped eating pork seven years ago. About those new silk boxers: I turned away from you because the $49.99 price tag was still on them, and I prayed that it was a coincidence that my sister had just borrowed fifty dollars from me that morning.

After all of this, I still loved you and felt that we could work it out. So when I hit the lotto for ten million dollars, I quit my job and bought us two tickets to Jamaica. But then I got home you were gone. Everything happens for a reason, I guess. I hope you have the fulfilling life you always wanted.

My lawyer said that the letter you wrote ensures you won’t get a dime from me.

So take care.
Your Ex-Wife,
Rich As Hell and Free!
P.S. I don’t know if I ever told you this, but my sister Carla was born Carl. I hope that’s not a problem.

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